Saturday, February 11, 2017

Blessed Are The Desperate

Mark 2:1-5

And again, he entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.
2 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.
3 And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
4 And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.

Mark 5:25-34

And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,
26 And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,
27 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.
28 For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.
29 And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague.
30 And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?
31 And his disciples said unto him, Thou seest the multitude thronging thee, and sayest thou, who touched me?
32 And he looked round about to see her that had done this thing.
33 But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth.
34 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.

In these passages are the stories of two very desperate people. In the first passage is the story of a man that had been born paralyzed, and in the second passage is a story of a woman who had been dealing with a medical condition, for which the doctors had no cure, for many years. There is absolutely no doubt these people were desperate.

 People become desperate when they reach a point where all hope of resolving their situation on their own is gone, and they are forced to seek a solution outside of themselves. At this point they are willing to try just about anything. They no longer care what anyone thinks or says, they are willing to be ridiculed if it brings them peace. They will go where they never thought they would go, they won’t let anything get in their way, they’re desperate and they are ready to take desperate measures.
Desperation is the condition that exists when a recognized need is present and we have no way of meeting it on our own.

There is one unmistakable truth that I have learned over my many years of being involves in ministry: God’s people, including myself, are needy - every single one of us. Many however, are stubborn, and so few are willing to acknowledge their need.

WEBSTER'S DEF. OF DESPERATE: feeling, showing, or involving a hopeless sense that a situation is so bad, as to be impossible to deal with:

Contrary to the world’s view, desperation is not a bad thing. Our enemy, the devil, has deceived many into thinking that the last thing we want to be is desperate. Desperation is viewed by the world as a sign of weakness. We see it as a failure to ask for help. But from God’s perspective, desperate people are those who are willing to acknowledge that there are some circumstances that only God can rescue us from, and so we need Him. There are many promises contained in the pages of His Word that only come to those who are desperate.

I believe the will of God is that every one of us should reach some measure of desperation. I believe His message to us all is that we have been examined by the great physician and diagnosed, “wanting.”

When I see in the pages of His Word the life that is available to us, and then I see in my own life, in other believer’s lives and in the church, the low level of spiritual life and the absence of spiritual power, it creates a sense of emptiness in me, a recognition that we are many times falling short of the glory that has been prepared for us. It stirs in me a sense of desperation.

 I am desperate this morning because I recognize the need for spiritual power to reach the lost, to heal the sick, and to help set free those in bondage. I am desperate for more Him, because I know that only He can give me what I’m lacking. I think this very desperation is what the Apostle Paul was feeling when he wrote, “that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and [f]the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; 11 [g]in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.” – Philippians 3:10

I love the way it is worded in J.B. Phillip’s translation - “God has given me that genuine righteousness which comes from faith in Christ. How changed are my ambitions! Now I long to know Christ and the power shown by his resurrection: now I long to share his sufferings, even to die as he died, so that I may perhaps attain as he did, the resurrection from the dead.”

Paul was desperate for more of God! I have learned from scripture, and from observation, this spiritual reality: only the desperate will receive their blessing from God. Why? Because they absolutely will not be kept from the presence of their healer by physical boundaries!

The desperate are willing to rip off a roof to obtain an audience with the Lord, they will push their way through a crowd just to touch the hem of His garment, they won’t be offended (even the dogs eat the crumbs), and they will not be silenced. How about you, are you desperate enough today to shout out in the crowd, “Son of David have mercy on me!”

Desperate people happily let go of their dignity for an opportunity to be touched by deity.

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